Organisers of the annual event, which is now in its 16th year, have been expressing great concern over the dwindling financial contributions that are being made by local businesses.
They have been quick to explain that they are extremely grateful to those few companies that continue to invest in the festival, because there is no doubt about the importance of the event to the spike in business activity that is created for hotels, restaurants, car rental companies, airlines and so many other sectors that benefit.
In response to a question asked by a reporter from MiyVue.com at a press conference on Thursday, 28th June, (the opening day of the three night affair), Minister responsible for the festival Richard Skerritt, indicated that despite the economic challenges, too many businesses see music and entertainment as a charitable contribution, instead of eyeing the potential business opportunities that can accrue from their association and support for the event.
Skerritt said it is critical for local corporate leaders to embrace music and entertainment as a strategic business avenue that allows them to market their services and product. Unfortunately, explained the minister, some of them do not recognize that.
Giving his opinion on the subject, Chairman of the Music Festival Committee Mr. Faron Lawrence, revealed that this year has been one of the most difficult ones, as they have experienced a significant reduction in cash sponsorship.
He added that their only substitute at this point, is to be more efficient in every aspect of the festival, and he further indicated that it is essential to contain costs as much as possible, and do whatever is necessary so that at the end of the day, the bills can be paid.
Another concern coming out of the press conference is that of low audience attendance at the Soca evening, which is usually the first night of the festival.